2011 NFL Draft: Why Alex Henery Is the Sleeper of the Draft

Matt DalbyCorrespondent IApril 12, 2011

LINCOLN, NE - NOVEMBER 13: Alex Henery #90 of the Nebraska Cornhuskers kicks an extra point against the Kansas Jayhawks during their game at Memorial Stadium on November 13, 2010 in Lincoln, Nebraska. Nebraska Defeated Kansas 20-3. (Photo by Eric Francis/Getty Images)
Eric Francis/Getty Images

He never won the Lou Groza Award. He was never even a finalist for the award, but somehow, Nebraska's Alex Henery slipped through the cracks en route to breaking four NCAA career kicking records over his four years.

Let this sink in for a moment.

Henery made 68 of 76 career field goals, good for 89.4 percent. That is nearly two percent higher than former record-holder Bobby Raymond at 87.8 percent.

From beyond 40 yards, Henery continued his staggering consistency, making 26 of 33 attempts, which was good for 78.7 percent. Billy Bennet currently sits in second with a 72.1 percent clip from beyond 40 yards.

Now we march inside the 40-yard line to determine that Henery is once again the NCAA record-holder at 98.6 percent (42-of-43).

If you passed your second grade math class, you've probably already determined that Henery is the most accurate kicker of all time when including his 99 percent extra-point rate (187-of-188). 

Ladies and gentlemen, Alex Henery is a 96.6 percent career kicker when his foot touches the ball.

Mind-boggling, utterly ridiculous, inhuman-like.

Whichever heroic adjective you choose to describe the Omaha native, one thing should be clear: The kid can flat-out kick.

I know those numbers were a lot to digest, but if there's one position that doesn't lie about projectability in the NFL, it's kicker. 

Throw in the fact Henery was Nebraska's punter, a role he thoroughly embraced and succeeded at, and you have the perfect special teams storm for any NFL squad. 

With roster spots dwindling and teams proving to be hard-strapped for cash nowadays, why not draft the surest thing out there?

No, I am not saying he is a first or second-rounder—but what about a third? Is it ludicrous to think that a kicker, who makes a clear impact on the football field despite being ridiculed to the side of the practice field, could be drafted this high in today's NFL?

Most fans couldn't even name who their team drafted in the third round, let alone what his stats were their rookie season. 

If you draft a kicker, you receive immediate reward. 

When you draft arguably the greatest—and without question, most accurate—kicker in the history of the NCAA, well my friends, you've got the surest thing of the 2011 NFL draft. 

Something Nebraska fans will be missing when No. 90 isn't on the field next year.